Rereading the Christian classic, Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners, was to revisit an old friend. John Bunyan (1628-1688) who was a dissenter or non-conformist in relationship to the Church of England. My recent visit to his home in Bedford, England, rekindled my desire to connect with this voice of spiritual encouragement from the past.
Bunyan is best known for Pilgrim’s Progress, a book which never goes out of print. Yet, Grace Abounding is his spiritual autobiography, written in the classic Bunyan style, comments laced with numerous scriptural references applicable to the subject. Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners discloses the enormous struggle Bunyan experienced with his conversion to Christ and his call to preach.
For those who think that the saints of old never had to confront doubt, discouragement and temptation, Grace Abounding will relieve you of that misconception. Every page of this book describes a tug of war in the mind and soul of John Bunyan. Essentially he personalizes what we know from the Bible as spiritual warfare.
In the 21st century, there is a hunger for substance, not self-centeredness, on the part of professing Christians. John Bunyan can help guide us on this journey, but first read his spiritual autobiography, Grace Abounding, and then read or reread Pilgrim’s Progress. At that point, you will be ready for a truly remarkable spiritual journey.